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William of Orange - 156

Mary II, born in 1662, was the daughter of James II and Anne Hyde. She was married to William of Orange as a matter of Charles II's foreign policy; she and William had no children. Mary died of smallpox in 1694. William III (William of Orange), born in 1650, was the son of William, Prince of Orange, and Mary Stuart (daughter of Charles I). Husband and wife were also first cousins, both being a grandchild of Charles I. William, one of the most significant players on the continent, constantly strove to spread Protestantism and decrease the Catholic influence of France and Spain. He died in 1702 from complications after being thrown from his horse.

The Battle of the Boyne

No date in Irish history is better known than 1690. No Irish battle is more famous than William III's victory over James II at the River Boyne, a few miles west of Drogheda.


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